Julia Marlowe America's Favorite Shakespearean Actress (August 17, 1865 – November 12, 1950)
Julia Marlowe by Arnold Genthe, 1911, vintage gelatin silver print
Julia Marlowe was a stage actress during the late 1800's and early 1900's. She was born Sarah Frances Frost at Caldbeck, England, on August 17, 1865. She came to the United States with her parents, John Frost and Sarah Hogston Frost when she was five years old. Upon entering the United States, her family settled in the state of Kansas. From there, they moved to Ironton, Portsmouth and Cincinnati, Ohio. From 1873 to 1877 she resided in a 3-story brick building on Second Street in the city of Portsmouth, Ohio. She lived here from age 7 to age 10.
In the March 3, 1903 edition of The Marion Daily Star newspaper, details of Julia's life in Portsmouth was recounted by Mr. Edward Staiger,"When Mr. Staiger was a boy and attended school at Portsmouth, a certain girl who was known as a tomboy was his classmate. This tomboy left Portsmouth when she was about ten years of age and went out into the world to become known and admired, later, as Julia Marlowe.
When Miss Marlowe lived at Portsmouth, her name was Fannie Brough and she was the daughter of a woman who ran a boarding house and saloon which was one of the most popular resorts in the town. Mr. Staiger recalls the girl as an unpromising youngster, a dare-devil willing to do anything any boy or girl was afraid to do.
Mrs. Brough moved to Cincinnati when Julia was about twelve years old, and opened a boarding house on Sixth street, which she is still running, despite the achievements of her wonderful daughter. She has since been married to a man by the name of Beck.
Mr. Staiger has met his old classmate but once since the days of their childhood and that was in Cleveland after she had won great favor at the hands of the theater-going public. Julia greeted him in an old-time rollicking way, and an evening of most pleasant reminiscences followed."
Another article in the February 2, 1942 issue of The Marion Star newspaper recounted:
"There are still living in Portsmouth those who remember Frances as a gay, lively girl, fond of making speeches, riding horseback, going on excursions into the Kentucky hills."
Julia Marlowe as 'Rosalind' in Shakespeare's As You Like It (1904-1913)
I just love her softness in her facial expression here!
Julia Marlowe was touring in Philadelphia in 1891 when she came down with typhoid fever. Her face became so swollen that doctors suggested lancing it to release the toxins but another treatment was performed instead. Thank goodness her face was saved and her career continued.
Julia Marlowe and her first husband Robert Taber, NYPL
337 Riverside Drive on W. 106th Street, NYC, as it stands today!
Julia Marlowe in Jeanne d'Arc. This reminds me so much of a J.W. Waterhouse painting
Julia Marlowe with her second husband E.H. Sothern in Hamlet, NYPL
Mr. and Mrs. E.H. Sothern in 1922 aboard the RMS Aquitania.
Julia Marlowe in 1950 at 73 years old Vintage publicity photograph
Julia Marlowe by John Daniel Barry, 1899, Richard G. Badger & Co., Boston, Massachusetts
Julia Marlowe: Her Life and Art by Charles Edward Russell, Kessinger Publishing, 2011